TULSA - The latest spike in gas prices has made the idea of converting vehicles to compressed natural gas more attractive than ever.
Tom Sewell of Tulsa Gas Technologies says he knows what the price for CNG will be in October of this year, and if he wants to bump it another fifteen cents, what it will be five years from now.
The price for CNG in the Tulsa area varies from about $1.40 to $1.90 per gge (Gas Gallon Equivalent).
Naturally, there's an up front cost to convert a vehicle to CNG.
Sewell tells KRMG "the EPA systems that we put on, those things are $12,000. Currently, the governor's giving a fifty percent tax credit, and then ONG gives you a $500 cash rebate."
He says the "magic number" to pay off the conversion is about 35,000 miles.
That may take a year or two for most drivers, but for fleet vehicles and people who travel a lot, the conversion is paid for quickly, and often the savings pay for the vehicle itself before too long.
- CNG is clean-burning
- It's cheaper than petroleum-based fuels
- It's produced domestically
- Conversion kits and cars built specifically for CNG are both available
- Prices are stable
- Supply is abundant
- Stations are sometimes hard to find
- Not all vehicles can be converted
- Some people report starting problems or a lack of power
- There aren't a lot of mechanics who can troubleshoot problems